By Gene Phelps / NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Tupelo’s won three straight state championships in boys high school bowling, but none in girls.
That could change this season, Golden Wave coach Susan Dudley hopes.
“This is the best chance we’ve ever had in girls,” Dudley said, prior to Monday’s match against North Pontotoc at Rebelanes. “If we don’t win, I’ll be very surprised.”
Tupelo, which defeated North Pontotoc 8-0 to up its record to 9-1 overall, is led by senior Ali Long, seventh grader Taylor Russell and sophomore Madison Stafford.
Long rolled a 246 high game against North Pontotoc and had the high series with a 641.
Russell had a 212 high game and a 615 high series while Stafford had a 201 high game and a 536 high series.
Lorrie Nance’s 146 was high game for North Pontotoc and her 423 was the team’s high series.
“We have a really good team, but I don’t think we’ve reached our potential,” Long said. “This team has a good attitude. That’s been a key.”
Tupelo’s final regular-season match is scheduled for Friday in Fulton against Itawamba AHS. The regionals are scheduled for Feb.11 in Tupelo and the Class II state tournament is scheduled for Feb. 26 in Tupelo.
“This team has been steady,” Dudley said. “They’ve worked together well all season.”
Hartigan likes chances
Tim Hartigan has been a part of three state championship teams and the junior likes the Golden Wave’s chances this season.
Tupelo, which improved to 7-2-1 overall with its 8-0 win against North Pontotoc, was led by Hartigan, who rolled a 276 high game and a 716 high series.
“We’re a lot younger than we’ve been,” he said. “Talent-wise, we’ve got a very good team. Mentally, we’ve got to be a little better, but we can do it.”
Dudley believes her boys can bowl with anybody in North Mississippi in the team portion of postseason play. However, in the Baker style finals – where bowlers alternate bowling frames in a match – she’s not as confident.
“It’s Baker where we fall apart because of the mental aspect,” she said. “Physically, they have the game, but they don’t have the mental game.
“The potential is there. It’s something we have to build on.”
Against North Pontotoc, Kelvin Ransey rolled a 237, TaBoris Osborne a 236 and Cody Chambers a 220. Ransey also had a 656 series for the Wave.
Lynn McCord’s 204 was the high game for the Vikings while Tommy Hudson’s 493 was the high series.
• Match results, Page 2B